The Black Death

The Black Death - Professor Ahearn Eng 1b T/Th 12-1:15...

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Professor Ahearn Eng 1b T/Th 12-1:15 March 4, 2009 The Black Death Starting in China then sweeping its way West all across Asia, the black plague of 1348 was one of the deadliest epidemics in human history. It is thought that the panicked people fled the scene by ship embarking on the Black Sea bringing the plague to the shores of Italy.The ships had been ordered out of the harbor, but it had been far too late. The disease would destroy nearly half of Europe's population, smother and knock over its economy, and chip away at its faith- based social infrastructure. Medieval institutions that prospered before the plague would never have a chance to recover. In fact a completely different society would emerge; one which we are all products of today. Most researchers believe that The Black Death came in three forms, the bubonic, pneumonic, and septicemia. Each different form of plague killed people in a vicious way. All forms were caused by a bacterium called Yersinia pestis that was carried by rodents like rats and squirrels, but transmitted to humans by the fleas that lived on them. A flea, having ingested plague-infected blood from its host, can survive for a great extent such as a month absent from that host prior to needing to find another warm body to live on. When that flea attempts to draw blood from a new victim, it always injects into that victim some of the blood already inside it. If that injected blood contained Yersinia pestis, then the victim was in for it. As for the rats this cause was devastating to many of the lower class individuals because often times they would have sewage in the streets and it would, most of the time, just sit and rot there because of poor irrigation in most cities. This allowed for the breeding of rats and provided an ideal environment for the rampant spread of the disease to any and all individuals who encounter it. Breathing in infected water droplets that were breathed or coughed out by someone who
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Paternostro 2 already had the disease spread the pneumonic plague. This form spread more quickly then the rest. The septicemia form was contracted when a victim’s bloodstream was poisoned, and this form caused victims to die the most quickly killing 95 percent of its victims in three to seven days. Although very few did survive the painful nightmare, usually once the symptoms were there it signaled maybe a week to live. Once infected with Yersinia pestis the bacteria would start to multiply in the lymph system. The lymph system is a major component to the body’s immune system. After just two days the symptoms could begin to show. Symptoms ranged from gushing blood from the nose to certain swellings in the groin or under the armpit that grew to the size of an egg or maybe a small apple. The swellings were called Buboes, which were the victims lymph nodes, thus that’s how one of the names came about, The Bubonic Plague. In a very short period of time the swelling eventually would spread to all throughout the body. Other
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The Black Death - Professor Ahearn Eng 1b T/Th 12-1:15...

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